My usual morning routine involves darting outside to grab the L.A. Times, wearing more than an eighth-grade girl wears to school and less than I’d like my neighbors to see me wearing.  This morning, I saw a sight that stopped me in my tracks and brought tears to my eyes.  A mature lady, who moved into the neighborhood from Haiti a few years ago, was learning to ride a  pink bicycle with the joy of a child.  I had to call out to her and her partner, and express my wonder and encouragement.  It was her first time on a bicycle.  Ever.  What a way to start the weekend!

I love seeing people try new things.

Last week, my ten-year old was confronted with having to swim across the Olympic-sized public pool to get an arm stamp indicating he could use the diving board in the deep-end.  He told me he didn’t think he could do it.  He was pretty certain.  He’s a decent swimmer, but he felt the distance was too far, and doing it without stopping, as is required, would be impossible for him.  Loads of children were lined up, ready to watch each other swim two at a time.  My son got in line, waited his turn, and nailed it!  I burst into tears.  Thankfully, behind dark sunglasses.  He was proud of himself for getting the arm stamp.  I was proud of him for trying, stunned with wonder and admiration.  I asked him how he managed to jump in and swim when he didn’t think he’d succeed, and he said, “I figured I’d just try.”  Matter of fact.  Just like that.  I don’t know how he got the way he is, but I’m so happy I get to be his mother.

Teachers are all around us.  I am blessed to be learning.